Category Archives: Employment

Kitsap posts solid first quarter job growth

Kitsap County added about 2,366 jobs from the first quarter of 2015 to the first quarter of 2016, according to preliminary estimates from the state Employment Security Department.

Kitsap had an average of 88,233 jobs during the first three months of the year, up nearly 3 percent from the same period of 2015. Job growth came from both the private sector (up 2 percent) and government sector (up 4 percent).

Here’s a graphical look at job growth in the county:

Employment/Unemployment

Overall employment among Kitsap residents also improved in the first quarter.

The county’s labor force (the total number of people working or seeking work) was up about 3,500 from the first quarter of 2015, reaching an average of 118,651.

An average of 111,711 residents were employed during the first three months of the year. The county unemployment rate hovered at about 5.8 percent.

Here’s a long-term look at Kitsap employment trends:

Private sector wages in Kitsap are in the middle of the pack

wintergreen1_26878523_ver1.0_640_480Kitsap County is in the middle of the pack in Washington when it comes to non-government wages.

The median hourly wage for the private sector in Kitsap was $18.03 an hour in 2014, according to a December report from the state Employment Security Department (these reports take about a year to be released).

Wages in Kitsap were far lower than in King County, where the median private sector wage soared to $26.89 in 2014.

Kitsap’s median wage was also lower than the median for the state ($21.48), which was skewed upward by King. And Kitsap’s median wage was still slightly lower than the state median with King County left out ($18.51).

Overall, Kitsap ranked 15th out of 39 Washington counties for private sector wages. The county’s median wage peaked in 2010, according to the report.

Here’s a graphical look at wage trends:

Port Orchard Safeway will reopen April 27

0729_KSLO_bethel-copySafeway is hiring 75 employees in Port Orchard as it prepares to reopen its Bethel Road store on April 27, company spokeswoman Tairsa Worman said.

The store was previously operated by Safeway but was acquired by Haggen in early 2015. Haggen declared bankruptcy last fall and closed the Port Orchard location Dec. 5. Albertsons bought the store back from Haggen and returned it to the Safeway banner.

The company is hiring full- and part-time workers for all areas of the store, including deli, meat, customer service, bakery and produce, according to a news release.

Benefits for eligible employees include health care, paid vacation and discounts at Safeway and Albertsons.

Worman said priority is being given to former employees of the store.

News of the Port Orchard store opening was welcomed by UFCW 21, which represents local grocery workers.

“We are looking forward to having this store re-open,” UFCW 21 spokesman Tom Geiger said. “Once store opens, we will get a list of employees from the employer and then come in and sign up members to make sure workers there get all the benefits of having a union grocery job.”

Safeway is holding open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday at the store, at 3355 Bethel Rd. SE. Job seekers can also apply at www.careersatsafeway.com.

Kitsap employment off to strong start in 2016

bridgelead_24864477_ver1.0_640_480

Kitsap County started the new year with strong employment and job numbers, according to the state Employment Security Department. 

Jobs in Kitsap

More than 88,100 people worked for employers within Kitsap County in January, according to preliminary estimates. That was an increase of 2,700 from January 2015.

Significant year-over-year gains were reported in both the private and government sectors.

The report also revised job estimates for 2015, reporting an average of 88,500 jobs for Kitsap last year.

Here’s a graphical look at job numbers:

Employment/Unemployment

Overall employment among Kitsap County residents was also better in January than in January 2015.

B0013070067--582128Kitsap’s labor force (the number of people working or actively seeking work) grew by more than 3,000 workers. About 3,700 more residents were employed.

The number of residents reported as unemployed fell to 7,040. The unemployment rate hovered at 5.9 percent (down from 6.4 percent in January 2015.)

The state also posted revised employment numbers for 2015, with more favorable results for Kitsap. Here’s a graphical look at long-term employment trends:

MAP: Migration to and from Kitsap

migration.pic
Ever wonder where Kitsap residents move from and where they go when they leave?

The Census Bureau has answers.

The map below shows net migration between Kitsap County and other U.S. Counties for 2009 through 2013, based on Census estimates (you can find the raw data and methodology here).

 

Instructions: Use the zoom tools to explore the map, or select individual states from the dropdown menu in the top right corner. Hover your mouse over the counties to see details. Click the house button to reset the map. 

Counties in the map are color coded. Counties shades of red are counties more Kitsap residents have moved to than have moved from. Counties in green are counties more residents have moved from than have moved to.

There are lots of interesting trends here I’ll hopefully be able to explore in more detail. Feel free to drop a comment below if something catches your eye.

Concentrix files official layoff notice with state

B0012625607--314607

Concentrix gave the state official notice Wednesday of plans to close its East Bremerton call center.

As we reported last week, the closure will impact about 500 employees.

concxlogo_business-983x3001The official WARN notice reports 520 positions are being cut, though Concentrix spokeswoman Jyllene Miller told me fewer than 500 people are currently employed at the center.

Miller said the displaced employees will be given priority for “a few hundred” work-at-home jobs Concentrix is hiring for.

The center is slated to close March 4, according to the WARN notice. Concentrix will continue paying employees through March 28.

A team from the local WorkSource office is responding to the call center to provide employees with information about unemployment insurance claims, retraining opportunities and job leads. Kitsap WorkSource Administrator Margaret Hess said a forum for employees is being planned.

This isn’t the only WARN notice being filed by a Kitsap employer this week. We also received word defense contractor BAE Systems will lay off 68 workers in Silverdale by the end of March.

County job numbers, employment improved in 2015

B0012351787--316618

More Kitsap residents were employed and more people were working at jobs inside the county in 2015, according to preliminary year-end numbers released by the Employment Security Department.  

Kitsap jobs

An average of 87,600 people worked for employers within the county last year, a 3.7 percent uptick from 2014. It was also a slight increase from Kitsap’s pre-recession high of 87,400, reported in 2006.

Job growth came from both the private and government sectors, which increased employment by 2.7 percent and 5.4 percent respectively.

Here’s a graphical look at job trends in Kitsap:

Employment/unemployment

Overall employment among Kitsap residents remains lower than before the recession, but there were signs of improvement last year.

0827_KSLO_Wash-625x417The labor force – the total number of people working or seeking work – appeared to stabilize over the past three years, after declining through the recession. Kitsap’s labor force averaged 113,580 in 2015.

Average employment rose in 2014 and 2015, reaching 107,200 last year.

An average of 6,382 Kitsap residents were counted as unemployed last year, though the number only included people who were actively seeking work.

The county’s unemployment rate has fallen steadily since 2010, reaching 5.6 percent in 2015. This was partially due to declines in the labor force.

Here’s a graphical look at employment trends in Kitsap:

Strong job numbers continued through October

Kitsap entered the holiday hiring season with more jobs than in previous years.

About 88,700 people were working for Kitsap companies in October, according to preliminary numbers from the state Employment Security Office. That was about 1,700 more than were employed in October 2014.

Numbers were up in the private sector, but the public sector posted a bigger gain, with an increase of about 1,200 jobs.

Here’s a graphical look at October job numbers:

Employment/unemployment

Kitsap’s labor force (the total number of residents working or seeking work) remained lower than previous years, but began to climb in October, as is typical for the season.

About 1,250 people entered the workforce between September and October.

Overall employment among Kitsap residents still fell slightly in October, and remains lower than in recent years.

The county’s unemployment rate remained steady at 5 percent.

Here’s a graphical look at employment trends:

Tuesday event showcases entrepreneur training program

showcaseMore than 1,100 aspiring entrepreneurs have received training through Kitsap’s BE$T program in the past 14 years.

About 40 of the businesses that BE$T helped launch will be showcased during a Tuesday event at the Bremerton Elks Lodge. The showcase will also honor the most recent graduates from the program, which is now administered by Kitsap Community Resources. 

The BE$T (Business Education Support Training) program provides classes for people interested in starting their own businesses and ongoing support for established businesses. The “boot camps” cover a a wide range of topics including business plans, marketing, taxes, licensing and insurance.

Tuition assistance is available for low-income applicants.

“A lot of entrepreneurs are trying to start a businesses on a shoestring,” Program Manager Dayna Ebersole said.

showcase.2Last year 92 participants graduated from the eight-week training course, resulting in 32 business startups, according to the program’s website. Another 67 existing businesses received counseling and training.

The program got its start as Washington CASH. But the CASH organization lost its grant funding in 2012 and Kitsap Community Resources took on the local the training program locally.

KCR Executive Director Larry Eyer said BE$T complement’s the organization’s other services.

“We think it’s a great fit, because our mission is to help people become economically successful, and become self sufficient,” he said.

The BE$T showcase is scheduled for 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at 4131 Pine Road NE. Businesses that have benefitted from BE$T will showcase their goods and services. Guest speakers include Bremerton Mayor Patty Lent and state Sen. Christine Rolfes.

For more information on BE$T, call 360-473-2141 or visit the program’s website.

The event is part of Global Entrepreneurship Week. Kitsap Economic Development Alliance has a full listing of Kitsap GEW events. 

Courtesy photos